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Messages - rstainer

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Recent ACs / Re: Re-imagined British Motoring Icon
« on: February 26, 2020, 09:33:34 »

The quotes are solely from AC press releases.

The purpose is to set out historical facts as a help to inquisitive readers who wish to draw their own conclusions.


Cobra (Thames Ditton) Forum / Re: CSX 2484
« on: December 27, 2019, 15:52:07 »
2484 was destroyed in 1966. Two replicas were subsequently constructed, one in 2003 and the other in 2015.

If you email me a photo of the stamping in question ( I'll comment on the font.


Robin Stainer - ACOC Thames Ditton Cobra Registrar

Cobra (Thames Ditton) Forum / Re: csx2450
« on: December 18, 2019, 18:54:36 »
February’s ACtion has a 2450 (or two 2450s) article based on knowledge to date. Any contribution of hitherto unknown fact would be much appreciated.

Robin Stainer

Recent ACs / Re-imagined British Motoring Icon
« on: December 09, 2019, 14:41:37 »
AC's 21st century progress:

November 2019
   'In 2020 AC Cars will launch a British motoring icon re-imagined for the electric age.'
December 2016
   'The AC Cobra 378 will be produced in 2017 as a reborn version of the classic sports car with a V8 engine and a traditional ladder chassis.'
September 2016
   'AC Cars will build nine new aluminium-bodied AC Cobras as part of a ‘legacy’ series.'
March 2012
   'AC returns to Geneva with four car line-up including a new supercar.'
February 2011
   'AC has announced it's returning to the UK market and will exhibit the Mk VI version of its venerable roadster at the 2011 Geneva motor show.'
April 2008
   'Acedes Holdings, LLC (“AC Cars”) has today announced that it will be manufacturing certain derivatives of its heritage product in the USA.'
March 2006
   'An agreement between Texas-based Unique Performance and AC Cars Ltd. will officially return genuine sports cars from the historic British marque to North America.'
November 2005
   'AC Cars, Britain's oldest sports car company, will build its first U.S. manufacturing plant in Bridgeport as part of a strategy to increase its American sales.'

Announcements are expected to continue apace.


Cobra (Thames Ditton) Forum / csx2450
« on: November 24, 2019, 17:40:34 »
CSX2450 was destroyed in December 1966 in a workshop fire in Fairfield, Iowa, together with many other vehicles. Fifty plus years later a Cobra that is claimed to be 2450 has appeared in France. Any information on this car, which would appear to have originated in France, would be much appreciated.

Robin Stainer
ACOC Cobra Registrar
44-1367 810231

AC never made a 5998 vehicle and the SAAC register ( has no record of a 5998 vehicle: it doesn't list any vehicle number between 3360 and 6001.

The ACOC Register Replicas Appendix ( records Replica VIN Asserted COB5998 as "Built by Kimmins Custom Fabrication, Cal, reportedly incorporating some original parts. LHD. FIA-style body.(Not an AC VIN)", completed in "1995". Fantasy Junction was advised of these public-record matters a year ago.


Cobra (Thames Ditton) Forum / Re: Tour Auto 2019
« on: June 03, 2019, 18:49:21 »
The Cobra registered 27 PE is reported to be CSX2232 imported from Colombia in the 70s and previously registered AFM 42A and RSW 11. The Thames Ditton Cobra Register lists 2232 as "believed to have been destroyed in the 60s.[Replica in the UK]" and its Replicas Appendix has "VIN Asserted CSX2232    Date Mid 80s Built for Roger Wright, reportedly using some parted out remains of the 6059 replica. Chassis and body thought to have been made by Brian Angliss. May originally have been numbered 6059. RHD."

It is suggested that this in-the-public-domain-for-many-years information is not be correct. Further information is expected in due course and I will advise if the Register wording is changed..


Cobra (Thames Ditton) Forum / Tour Auto 2019
« on: May 05, 2019, 12:35:45 »
Does anyone know the chassis number (VIN) of the light blue James Cottingham/Andrew Smith Cobra (car# 203)?


PS: Internet videos & photos show 2349 quitting the Tour in an unusual way.

Recent ACs / Re: New Continuation Cobras
« on: March 29, 2019, 11:58:39 »

As you rightly observe, 10 to 17 provide a wealth of ‘clear identification of the particular vehicle'  information that is of much use to registrars.

There is no alternative register suggestion whatsoever and I apologise if I wasn’t clear – my suggestion was that you might like to become ACOC registrar for more recently constructed ACs.


Recent ACs / Re: New Continuation Cobras
« on: March 28, 2019, 11:39:16 »

Our registrar’s efforts are not in vain.

Until, I believe, the 70s the AC Car Number and UK VIN were the same. For example, the Vehicle Registration Document for my 62 Cobra has VIN: CSX2042. When the UK vehicle registration authorities and motor manufacturers adopted ISO 3779 VINs, most EU manufacturers took the whole 17 digits to be the car number but a small number, producing low-volume retro vehicles, kept the same retro-format car number but incorporated their car number (or enough of it to identify the vehicle) in digits 10 to 17 to provide clear identification of the particular vehicle.

All our registrars have the AC Car Number from the Factory Ledger or other authoritative sources and potential purchasers, the main register users, can easily check that the VIN incorporates the manufacturer’s car number.

If you are able produce an ACOC-policy-compliant register for ACs other than those currently listed the Club will gladly appoint you registrar for those vehicles. As regards Club policy, member recommendations for clearly-thought-through change are always welcome.


Recent ACs / Re: New Continuation Cobras
« on: March 26, 2019, 20:48:10 »

Even if less than 500 there must be a known ‘manufacturer of record’ for it to be classed as an AC. If an owners’ club doesn’t know who made the vehicle, the owners’ club can’t include it in its register.  Not one of the AC companies in the 3rd March post above lists its ‘Nature of Business’ as ‘Manufacture of Motor Vehicles’ (SIC 29100).

However, I’m only the Thames Ditton Cobra Registrar and not on the Club’s Council. Any proposed changes to Club policy need to be put to Council via Constant Wagner or Andy Shepherd.


Recent ACs / Re: New Continuation Cobras
« on: March 25, 2019, 20:52:31 »

This should really be addressed to Constant Wagner, but I’ll have a stab at an answer.

All vehicles sold as manufactured vehicles need a manufacturer of record - under ISO 3779 it’s the world manufacturer identifier, the first three digits of the VIN/car number. ACOC Registers only list cars where AC (or Shelby American for Shelby contract ACs) is the manufacturer of record and AC has advised us, or we’ve had reliable information from other impartial sources, about the VINs and dates of cars sold or ready for sale.

AC hasn’t provided us with any information for almost twenty years and we’ve received no reliable information from impartial sources, so no register for cars made this century. You may put me right, but I don’t know of any current AC company that is a manufacturer of record.

The ACOC defines an original car as one having continuous history as a complete vehicle since manufacture. ‘Fake’ (a thing that is claimed to be other than what it is) is a more nebulous term; for example, some would call FIA HTP Cobras built this century fakes, but if they’re properly described they’re genuine but not ACs. I would describe them as genuine replicas if they replicate the performance and behaviour of the period and non-genuine replicas if they don’t. Genuine unless defined is as nebulous as fake unless defined.


Recent ACs / Re: New Continuation Cobras
« on: March 24, 2019, 20:04:03 »

The AC Mk VI GTs, Mk VI GT BIG BLOCKs, Mk VI GTSs and Mk VI GTSRs (not, please note, 'Cobras') were manufactured by AC Automotive GmbH (Straubenhardt, Germany), the Jürgen Mohr/Laurent Abert company that may have ceased physical existence (see Spatnik post above).

Is someone, somewhere, still manufacturing these cars? The evidence would suggest not.


Recent ACs / Re: New Continuation Cobras
« on: March 24, 2019, 16:16:34 »


ACEDES Holdings LLC was a Malta company (PO Box 103, Silema) that ceased operations in 2008: “The owner of a sports car manufacturing company who in 2005 was granted half a million Euros in government aid to transfer his factory to Malta, abandoned the factory and fled the island, without paying anything back to Maltese authorities” (the Malta Star, 18 March 2008).

It appears the ‘company’ was then transferred to another country not normally associated with car manufacturing, St Kitts-Nevis.

Is AC still in business? Taking the conventional meaning of business (operations, markets etc) the evidence suggests NO.


Cobra (Thames Ditton) Forum / Re: CSX2388
« on: March 07, 2019, 10:10:17 »

Not the case. We also ‘resurrect it based on its completeness’; the only requirement is that the car hasn’t been parted out.

The ex Jim Rose 2388 is correctly described in the ACOC leaf-spring replicas appendix as:

VIN asserted    Date    Reg      Colour  Trim  Last known owner   Location  Additional information
   CSX2388        1986  1964 AC    Silver    Red    Michel Lecourt          France       Built by Jim Rose. RHD. Converted to LHD.                                                                                                                                          Race prepared. FIA HTP.
                               EBY 518B                                                                         [Jim Rose]
                                                                                                                      (Original exists, in the USA)

The ACOC has always classified the Rose 2388, now in France, as a Replica built in 1986.


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